Ground-based electromagnetic (EM) and drill-hole ice and snow thickness and melt pond depth measurements during Polarstern cruise ARK-IX/4, ARK-XI/1, and ARK-XII, supplement to: Haas, Christian; Gerland, Sebastian; Eicken, Hajo; Miller, Heinz (1997): Comparison of sea-ice thickness measurements under summer and winter conditions in the Arctic using a small electromagnetic induction device. Geophysics, 62(3), 749-757


Drillhole-determined sea-ice thickness was compared with values derived remotely using a portable small-offset loop-loop steady state electromagnetic (EM) induction device during expeditions to Fram Strait and the Siberian Arctic, under typical winter and summer conditions. Simple empirical transformation equations are derived to convert measured apparent conductivity into ice thickness. Despite the extreme seasonal differences in sea-ice properties as revealed by ice core analysis, the transformation equations vary little for winter and summer. Thus, the EM induction technique operated on the ice surface in the horizontal dipole mode yields accurate results within 5 to 10% of the drillhole determined thickness over level ice in both seasons. The robustness of the induction method with respect to seasonal extremes is attributed to the low salinity of brine or meltwater filling the extensive pore space in summer. Thus, the average bulk ice conductivity for summer multiyear sea ice derived according to Archie's law amounts to 23 mS/m compared to 3 mS/m for winter conditions. These mean conductivities cause only minor differences in the EM response, as is shown by means of 1-D modeling. However, under summer conditions the range of ice conductivities is wider. Along with the widespread occurrence of surface melt ponds and freshwater lenses underneath the ice, this causes greater scatter in the apparent conductivity/ice thickness relation. This can result in higher deviations between EM-derived and drillhole determined thicknesses in summer than in winter.

Metadata Access
Creator Haas, Christian;Miller, Heinz;Gerland, Sebastian;Eicken, Hajo
Publisher PANGAEA - Data Publisher for Earth & Environmental Science
Publication Year 1997
Rights Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported (CC-BY)
Language English
Resource Type Supplementary Collection of Datasets
Format application/zip
Discipline Earth System Research
Spatial Coverage (77N-86N,67E-155E)
Temporal Point 1993-09-03T11:59:59Z